The Murder of Seamus Ludlow in County Louth, May 1976. Towards a public inquiry?







3 July 2002 - The Irish Attorney General has directed the Coroner for County Louth to hold a fresh inquest into the death of Seamus Ludlow.  . . . . Please return for updates and important developments.    This photograph of Seamus Ludlow was taken later in his life.This is a youthful photograph of Seamus Ludlow, taken several years before his murder.This memorial stone marks the place where the dead body of Seamus Ludlow was discovered on Sunday 2nd. May, 1976. This new stone recently replaced another stone.




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The Celtic League, 30 April 2001:



The Celtic league has re-iterated its support for calls by the family
of a Co. Louth man murdered 25 years for a public enquiry into the
circumstances of his killing

Seamus Ludlow was a 47-year-old forestry worker from Thistlecross,
Mountpleasant, near Dundalk who was murdered on the 2nd of May 1976.

It is believed his killing was a case of mistaken identity and that
his killers were a loyalist murder gang, at that time operating in
the Armagh border area of N. Ireland. 

There is also a strong suspicion of complicity in the killing by the
British security forces, who it is alleged were using murder gangs
in the north at the time. The use of such irregular forces was based
on a counter insurgency theory developed by Frank Kitson an intelligence
officer with the British Army.

In January the Minister for Justice, John O'Donoghue, indicated in
correspondence to the Celtic League that he was considering ways of
meeting the Ludlow families concerns. The Irish government had proposed
a private enquiry headed by a senior judicial figure. This was rejected
by the Ludlow family.

In correspondence (attached) to government Minister Dermot Ahern,
who is also a Louth TD, the League urge a rethink.

Bernard Moffatt

Celtic League 


The Minister for Social, Community & Family Affairs

Mr. Dermot Ahern TD

Office of the Minister

Store Street

Dublin 1


Dear Minister,

We write with reference to the unresolved murder of Seamus Ludlow.
The Celtic League have supported the call of the Ludlow family for
an independent public enquiry into this matter and indeed we wrote
to An Taoiseach, the Minister for Justice and the Secretary of State
for N. Ireland on this issue recently (encl.).

The League understand that recently a demonstration to commemorate
the 25th anniversary of the murder was held by family and friends
and that prior to this you reiterated the governments unwillingness
to establish such an enquiry. It was disappointing to hear this. 

In January the Minister for Justice did seem to indicate, in correspondence
to us (encl.), that a formula acceptable to the Ludlow family would
be found. One of the most positive aspects of the British-Irish peace
process is the willingness amongst all sections of the community to
confront uncomfortable truths. I do not believe that the British Security
Services, however much they might wish it, are immune from that process.

There have for many years been suspicions about the operation of clandestine
military units and their utilisation of loyalist paramilitary groups.
Indeed there is currently a furore in the media in the north of Ireland
because of attempts by UTV to highlight the activities of such groups.

It is only a full independent enquiry, such as the Ludlow family
are seeking, which can expose the truth. I do hope that the Irish
government will reconsider its stance.

Yours sincerely,

J B Moffatt 

The Celtic League has branches in the six Celtic Countries of the
western British Isles and Brittany. It works to promote cooperation
between these countries and campaigns on a broad range of political,
cultural and environmental matters. It targets human rights abuse
and monitors all military activity within these areas.

TEL (UK)01624 627128 MOBILE (UK)07624 491609

Internet site at

news site at:

I Homepage I I Top I Press Coverage I I Barron Inquiry I I Terms of reference for Barron Inquiry I I Meeting the Police Ombudsman I I Fresh Inquest I I Celtic League Support I I New GuestMap Guest Book. I   

Further Celtic League statements.





No.164  MURDER GANG ENQUIRY CALL - 10/30/2000

                                 Press Reports

The Irish Independent, 19 July 2002: Fresh inquest into death of murdered man

The Irish News, 19 July 2002: Family welcome inquest 26 years after murder

The Irish Times, 19 July 2002: New inquest ordered into Louth man's death

The Dundalk Democrat, 20 July 2002: Second inquest to be held into the death of Seamus Ludlow

The Sunday Life, 28 July 2002: Inquest to name Ludlow killers

The Irish Examiner Online - Breaking News, 29 July 2002: Call for public inquiry into 1976 murder

Ulster Television (UTV), online 29 July 2002: Celtic League in demand over murder

The Examiner, 30 July 2002: Ludlow killers to be named

The Irish News, 6 August 2002: Celtic League to fight on for murder inquiry

The Argus (Dundalk), 23 August 2002: Coroner wants the law changed to compel witnesses to attend inquests

The Irish News, 27 August 2002, Loyalist victim's family call for answers

Copyright 2003 the Ludlow family. All rights reserved.
Revised: January 12, 2003 .